Unique sideboard, designed for Little Thakeham, Thakeham, West Sussex

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  • Exhibited

    'Lutyens: The Work of the English Architect Sir Edwin Lutyens (1869-1944)', Hayward Gallery, London, 18 November 1981-31 January 1982

  • Literature

    Colin Amery, Margaret Richardson, Gavin Stamp, Lutyens: The Work of the English Architect Sir Edwin Lutyens (1869-1944), exh. cat., Hayward Gallery, London, 1981, not illustrated p. 106, cat. no. 6

  • Catalogue Essay

    Phillips wishes to thank Mrs Candia Lutyens for her assistance with the cataloguing of the present lot.

    In The Architecture of Sir Edwin Lutyens, ASG Butler writes regarding Little Thakeham that: 'Perhaps the enchantment of this house may be summarised in its containing, within the vesture of a rough solid traditional Sussex building, an unexpected jewel of invention in its principal room. In that way, it resembles a distinguished old lady who lives in the country and, fading beautifully, wears her pearl necklace beneath a worn but well-cut raincoat'.

    Described in a Country Life article, dated August 1909, as being ‘among its architect’s real successes’, and also considered by the great British architect himself, Sir Edwin Lutyens, as 'the best of the bunch', Little Thakeham, which is now Grade I-listed, was built in 1902-1903 for Ernest Blackburn after he inherited his Father’s fortune. Blackburn entrusted Lutyens with Little Thakeham in August 1902 having him take over from a previous architect, John Hatchard-Smith, who complained publicly about the transition. Even Country Life joined in the debate siding with the client, Blackburn, who made the following statement: 'There seems to be a view entertained by many architects and most building papers that houses are built to display the skill and taste of the architect. This is not the case. Houses are built for men to live in and those who live in them are entitled to have them built to suit their fancy and convenience'.

    A consistent design element retained within Little Thakeham is the skilfully handcrafted ironwork designed for the door furniture. The present lot sideboard has the same forged-iron hinges that are featured throughout the house which is typical of Lutyens as all details were of great significance to the architect.

83

Property from Little Thakeham, West Sussex

Unique sideboard, designed for Little Thakeham, Thakeham, West Sussex

1902-1903
Stained oak, wrought iron.
86 x 162.6 x 61.6 cm (33 7/8 x 64 x 24 1/4 in.)
Reverse with exhibition label printed Arts Council of Great Britain/105 Piccadilly London W1V 0AU/01-629 9495/exhibition LUTYENS 1981/cat. no. 134 / 6/artist Lutyens/title Little Thakeham / sideboard/owner Little Thakeham Hotel.

Estimate
£8,000 - 12,000 

sold for £20,000

Contact Specialist
Madalena Horta e Costa
Head of Sale
+44 20 7318 4019

Important Design

London Auction 26 April 2018